Do people care about these sorts of random historical fashion things? I never know if I should be straying so far from the topic of paper dolls… I’m still divided about the “posting pictures from my sketchbook” idea. It’s kinda fun, but, again, I’m not sure people enjoy them. Well loyal fans, what do you think?
Oh, and I spent some time tonight fixing some link problems some of the Magnetic Paper Doll images were having. If you like magnetic paper dolls, you can check out my directions and images on my Magnetic Paper Dolls page. More magnetic clothing sets will be forthcoming as I get them ready.
1. Archery was actually a common sport among upper class women in the early 19 century. Along with riding, it was one of the few athletic activities women were allowed to do. Flora’s archery dress is based on one from the Manchester City Galleries.
2. It is entirely possible for me to completely forget what day it is and therefore mess up my planned Curves post. (Sorry guys. It’ll go up next week. My bad.)
3. There are more people interested in a colored version of 2.0 Curves, then a black and white shadowed version, but the shadowed people are much more vocal… Hmm… Who should I listen to? Maybe I’ll outline it and try it both ways… My concern with shadowed has to do with what I feel like is a loss of detail due to the shading… I need to give it more thought, obviously.
Speaking of the Curves 2.0 epic adventure, I hope to have the new series up sometime before the end of the month. I don’t like starting a new series without at least a few posts drawn and prepped. It means I’m not struggling with keeping it going. That’s all the news for now. Enjoy Flora’s Archery and Evening Dresses.
So, confession time- I am getting a little sick of the regency period. I think I’ll be spending some time over the next few days doing research and thinking about ending the series. Can I kill two series in like three weeks… is that allowed? I’m just not excited by Flora much right now… Plus she has like 30 costumes which seems a pretty good number…. Though that might just be fishing for an excuse.
In the mean time, feel free to color and cut out these pretty regency dresses for Flora and, while you’re at it, vote in my current poll. So far I am shocked at the show of support my heavily shadowed paper dolls have gotten. I always thought of them as the black sheep of the blog (and I have the frustration with them that the shadows obscure details, especially on faces), but they’re getting lots of support, though color is winning at the moment. I rather thought it would.
For even more black and white paper dolls, I would recommend a new (well, old blog, but new to me) blog I found. Mostly Paper Dolls is a blog devoted to, in fact, mostly paper dolls (and some coloring pages and other things thrown in for good measure). Some of them are beautifully colored by hand, but most are black and white images from old newspaper microfilm. I really like this set from 1922, particularly the girl paper doll with the very period dresses. Perhaps I will color it myself someday… Anyway, if you have a few minutes and you feel like pouring through many pages of black and white paper dolls, I recommend Mostly Paper Dolls highly. The image quality suffers (mircofilm reproduction is usually shoddy, I’m afraid), but the quantity and wonderful variety more then makes up for it.
I’m having fun pouring through her archives, and I suspect others will too. 🙂
There’s quite a few other Regency paper dolls out there. I thought I would call attention to a few of them along with today’s Flora post. Monica posted a regency dress of her own over at her blog. It’s a beautiful blue and brown one. I feel like I should promote other regency paper doll costume since that’s what Flora is all about. Liana has done some regency paper doll dresses as well with this white one being my favorite. Or, if you want something full color and beautiful, there’s always Helen Page’s Regency Lady of Quality which is lovely, if not terribly historically accurate.
As for the current set of dresses for Flora, we have a walking costume based on a fashion plate from 1812 and a day dress based on the fact that I have a circles template that I don’t use often enough. Also, I wanted to do something with a pattern. Patterns kinda scare me, so I am trying to do them more often, but they are time consuming. Despite the tendency to assume the entire Regency era was white, there was actually quite a bit of color in fabrics. Turkey red fabrics were especially popular.
This has been a busy week here among the corn. I’ve been working and schooling. I got to listen in on a fascinating lecture about the history of bibles (not the text, but the printing history of the book) and that was amazing. And, of course, I’ve been working on homework and other things while work is very busy. It’s been fun, but hectic.
Neither of these costumes for Flora were based on specific fashion plate. I felt like she needed a spencer jacket (the short jacket) which is such a well known early 19th century garment. It was named for George Spencer, 2nd Earl Spencer. The story goes he burned the tails off his coat while warming himself by the fire and just decided to cut them off. It seems doubtful this actually happened, but it’s a neat story. Jane Austen’s World blog had somebeautiful photos of spencer jackets. I confess to actually not being a big fan of Austen, but people keep telling me I should reread her novels. I keep telling them I have other things I’d rather read. This is a hard case to make to my good friend who wrote her Master’s thesis on Jane Austen.
So, I just realized I actually have three paper dolls on the site all named Flora (one short run doll, one pixie paper doll and the regency doll) and I don’t even like the name Flora that much… I feel a little like a ditz as a result, but I don’t plan on letting it get to me too much. I mean, all ready pretty much have accepted that I’m a bit spacey (usually I try to blame this on a combination of work, school and everything else).
Today Flora (the Regency one) has a morning dress and a set of short stays. According to Ewing’s book Fashion in Underwear (which is being reprinted by Dover), the short stays were common through 1800 with this example I drew dating from 1790. There was a dramatic drop in the number of stays manufactures in the early 1800s. I always thought stays and corsets were distinctly different objects, but I have recently learned that, according to both Ewing and a few others, that the terms were used interchangeably for most of the 19th century before “corset” survived into the 20th and “stays” stayed (bad pun, I know) in the 19th century.
Her morning dress is based on this illustration from the New York Public Library Digital Gallery which dates from and, of course, she has a cap to go with it. The morning dress was considered undress by the women of the era (there was also full dress and half dress) and was not usually worn outside of the house. It’s a beautiful garment though and the style of sleeve was called the “Juliet Sleeve” which I think is rather romantic and also.. um… does not bode well for the person wearing it.
Also, there’s a new poll. I’m enjoying polls. They take the stress out of decision making. 🙂